Lighting Design

BU’s Lighting Design program enjoys a national reputation under the leadership of Associate Professor Mark Stanley. The program aims to develop a complete theatre artist by fostering a passion for theatre, storytelling, design, and the collaborative process. As an MFA or BFA Lighting Design student, your course of study will encourage you to:

  • Critically analyze of a wide range of texts, music, movement, and design.
  • Create and interpret visual, conceptual, and emotional responses.
  • Communicate through light and design these responses to an audience in support of the theatrical experience.

BFA Program of Study

MFA Program of Study



Unique Opportunities

  • Explore your creative process through supervised production assignments and hands on workshops.
  • Enjoy exposure to the current practice and philosophy of design and production through associations with professional theatre organizations, the general arts community in Boston, and a faculty of active theatre professionals.
  • Develop professional skills through production work, internships, and mentored work and design that will serve as a basis for your transition from the academic world to the larger community of theatre professionals.

Application & Portfolio Review

MFA applicants, please contact Program Head, Mark Stanley, and review the portfolio and application requirements for MFA Design, Production & Management.

BFA applicants should refer to the College’s Undergraduate Admissions page and follow the instructions for admission to the Design & Production Freshman Core program.


Alumni Notes

The BU Lighting Design program boasts graduates who have gone on to become members of United Scenic Artists and are currently working in film, television, theatre, and other areas of the entertainment industry. Alumni include:

  • Chris Akerlind (BFA 1985) | Broadway Lighting Designer
  • Katy Atwell (MFA 2014) | Assistant Lighting Director, New York City Ballet
  • Marcus Dillard (MFA 1983) | Freelance Lighting Designer and Professor
  • TJ Gerkens (MFA 1992) | Freelance Lighting Designer
  • Matthew Guminski (BFA 2003) | Freelance Lighting Designer
  • Nicholas Houfek (BFA 2007) | Freelance Lighting Designer
  • Tyler Lambert-Perkins (MFA 2014) | Lighting Designer, Los Angeles Ballet
  • Eric Larson (BFA 2005) | Assistant Lighting Designer, Metropolitan Opera
  • Ben Pearcy (BFA 1993) | Broadway Lighting and Projection Designer
  • Rui Rita (BFA 1990) | Broadway Lighting Designer
  • David Rosenberg (MFA 1989) | Theatre Projects
  • Heather Sparling  (BFA  2010) | Assistant Lighting Designer, Chicago Lyric
  • Mary Ellen Stebbins (MFA 2011) | Freelance Lighting Designer
  • Eric Watkins (MFA 2012) | Freelance Lighting Designer
  • Scott Zielinski (BFA 1987) | Freelance Lighting Designer

Core Faculty

Mark Stanley, Program Head, Associate Professor
Jorge Arroyo, Assistant Professor, Lighting Design
Seághan McKay, Lecturer